RE: virus: MS Weapon

Robin Faichney (
Mon, 13 Oct 1997 11:58:11 +0100

> From: Brett Lane Robertson[]
I did have a filter set up so I didn't have to see anything
from you, Brett, but I was browsing my deleted items
folder and came across this:

> At 11:32 AM 10/12/97 +0100, you wrote:
> >> From: Nathaniel Hall[]
> >> I think at this point a definition of a pattern would be useful.
> Any
> >> takers?
> >Yuz
> >An information stream contains a pattern if and only if
> >it can be compressed and reexpanded without loss,
> >otherwise it is random. (See Dennett's "Real Patterns"
> >in the Journal of Philosophy 1991, though he gets it
> >from someone else, whose details I don't recall right
> >now, but can get if required.)
> If a meme is a pattern, and behavior is a stream of information; then,
> "Behavior refers to a meme if and only if the behavior can be
> simplified and
> complexified without loss of information; in this way, the meme
> represents
> the most simple form of a predictable behavior and thus replicates
> itself
> through more complex expressions of itself."
Though I don't like the way you express it, I think you have
a valuable point here. Memes are certainly patterns within
behavioural streams of information. And I like "the most
simple form of a predictable behaviour", though I think
"repeating" might be just slightly better than "predictable".
I also think "through more complex expressions of itself"
is redundant -- all expressions of a meme will be more
complex than the meme itself.

Anyway, though I still have a certain antipathy to your
style, the anti-Brett filter is now junked.